“I didn’t know you were going through this. I hope this (abuse, depression, anxiety) wasn’t happening when I was around.” There seems to be a sense of community guilt that is hanging on to bumper of my story.
My answer? Of course it was. But you weren’t allowed to see inside my life. You weren’t allowed to see the wounds, hear the cries or know the pain. Everything was made to appear perfect on the outside but the truth was manipulated or hidden by perpetrators who were intent on saving face.
As an adult in a care giving profession, nobody could have known the toll that the dead and dying, sick and addicted, and those intent on destroying their own lives, would take on me. You didn’t know and you didn’t need to. All you needed to know is that I was trying my damnedest to survive and care for those in my charge with the limitations imposed on me.
It’s a painful and almost embarrassing reality that we do not really know the insides of even our closest friends. Our culture feeds us independence and sets us up to compare with one another. But this competition to be the best at hiding our worst is exactly what causes distrust and further pain. We will never really connect with the plastic veneer we offer one another. Deep truth slides off those shiny surfaces and falls to the ground. The deepest connection possible is with one another’s pain, needfulness for grace and craving for peace,
I am learning to live honestly. I am validating and supporting my own struggle and triumphs.
Someone said to me recently, “I didn’t know you had gone through all of this. I always thought you were strong and put together.” Well, I am. And I’m broken.
We all are. That’s what makes us beautiful.